If you don't know who Hard Fi are,Here's a little introduction.They are four chavy lads from the London suburb of Staines.They say they write songs to soundtrack peoples life and this their debut was recorded in a smelly lock-up.It sounds like a recipe for world domination but listening to this you soon find out it's not.
If you live outside England the word 'Chav' may be new to you.But it is used to describe lower class people who live in rough estates with cheap cars (think 'Pimp my ride' on a £500 budget),a love of cheap alcohol,a bleak outlook towards other cultures and a crap dress sense.
Now i'm not saying Hard Fi are all these but like i said they come from a deadbeat suburb and record album in lock-ups.Plus they wear Burberry and drink Cider.But they are also another band to be hyped up by the media untill their record goes top 3 and they steal every gig they play.
But i'm still gonna have to hand to them for coming up with one hell of an original sound.A mixture of Ska,Indie,Hip Hop and Pop all make 'Stars Of CCTV' sound fresh and new.Album opener 'Cash Machine' is a great Dance/Ska influence racket.Even colder slower tracks like 'Tied Up Too Tight' will win you over.But it's track #5 'Hard To Beat' which really impresses you.Sounding like The Clash jamming in a nightclub it's the surefire hit of the summer and one of the best songs of the year so far.
But under all the big beats and skang heavy guitars they are some horrible tracks like 'Middle Eastern Holiday' which sounds like Blazin Squad (rubbish rap boyband from the UK) and the terrible title track at the end.'Gotta Reason' sounds like Hot Hot Heat on Cider.Not a good thing.Piano-led ballad 'Move On Now' wants to be the big singalong live masterpiece but falls flat on it's arse.
Apart from the first three singles (Cash Machine,Tied Up Too Tight,Hard To Beat) which are all Indie Dance gems.The rest is weak and empty with most songs lacking personality and depth.But at least there still is that original 'Hard Fi' sound weaving though all tracks.Which is freshing after all the Garage and Art rock copy cats over the last two years
The Conclusion.Hard Fi may sell 10 million records,they may sell 27 but i think this is another overated,overhyped album which when you look deeper in to it is empty and mostly terrible.It's a real let down.Well i thought so anyway
Hard To Beat
Tied Up Too Tight
Stay Away From:
Like This,Try This:
A Grand Don't Come For Free (8/10)
The Ordinary Boys-
Over The Counter Culture (6/10)
The Ordinary Boys-